January 15
Genesis 43:1 45:28

 And the famine was severe in the land. 2 And it came about that as soon as they had finished eating up the cereals they had brought from Egypt, their father proceeded to say to them: “Return, buy a little food for us.” 3 Then Judah said to him: “The man unmistakably bore witness to us, saying, ‘YOU must not see my face again unless YOUR brother is with YOU.’ 4 If you are sending our brother with us, we are willing to go down and buy food for you. 5 But if you are not sending him, we shall not go down, because the man did say to us, ‘YOU must not see my face again unless YOUR brother is with YOU.’” 6 And Israel exclaimed: “Why did YOU have to do harm to me by telling the man YOU had another brother?” 7 At this they said: “The man directly inquired concerning us and our relatives, saying, ‘Is YOUR father yet alive? Do YOU have another brother?’ and we went on to tell him according to these facts. How could we know for certain that he would say, ‘Bring YOUR brother down’?”

     8 Finally Judah said to Israel his father: “Send the boy with me, that we may get up and go and that we may keep alive and not die off, both we and you and our little children. 9 I shall be the one to be surety for him. Out of my hand you may exact the penalty for him. If I fail to bring him to you and present him to you, then I shall have sinned against you for all time. 10 But if we had not lingered around, we should by now have been there and back these two times.”

     11 So Israel their father said to them: “If, then, that is the case, do this: Take the finest products of the land in YOUR receptacles and carry them down to the man as a gift: a little balsam, and a little honey, labdanum and resinous bark, pistachio nuts and almonds. 12 Also, take double the money in YOUR hand; and the money that was returned in the mouth of YOUR bags YOU will take back in YOUR hand. Maybe it was a mistake. 13 And take YOUR brother and get up, return to the man. 14 And may God Almighty give YOU pity before the man, that he may certainly release to YOU YOUR other brother and Benjamin. But I, in case I must be bereaved, I shall certainly be bereaved!”

     15 Accordingly the men took this gift, and they took double the money in their hand and Benjamin. Then they rose and went their way down to Egypt and got to stand before Joseph. 16 When Joseph saw Benjamin with them, he at once said to the man who was over his house: “Take the men to the house and slaughter animals and make preparation, because the men are to eat with me at noon.” 17 Immediately the man did just as Joseph had said. So the man took the men to Joseph’s house. 18 But the men got afraid because they had been taken to Joseph’s house, and they began to say: “It is because of the money that went back with us in our bags at the start that we are being brought here for them to fall upon us and attack us and to take us for slaves and also our asses!”

     19 Hence they approached the man who was over Joseph’s house and spoke to him at the entrance of the house, 20 and they said: “Excuse us, my lord! We surely did come down at the start to buy food. 21 But what occurred was that when we came to the lodging place and began opening our bags, why, here was the money of each one in the mouth of his bag, our money in full weight. So we would like to return it with our own hands. 22 And more money we have brought down in our hands to buy food. We certainly do not know who placed our money in our bags.” 23 Then he said: “It is all right with YOU. Do not be afraid. YOUR God and the God of YOUR father gave YOU treasure in YOUR bags. YOUR money came first to me.” After that he brought out Simeon to them.

     24 Then the man brought the men into Joseph’s house and gave water that they might have their feet washed, and he gave fodder for their asses. 25 And they proceeded to get the gift ready for Joseph’s coming at noon, because they had heard that it was there they were going to eat bread. 26 When Joseph went on into the house, then they brought the gift that was in their hand to him into the house, and prostrated themselves to him to the earth. 27 After this he inquired whether they were getting along well and said: “Is YOUR father, the aged man of whom YOU have spoken, getting along well? Is he still alive?” 28 To this they said: “Your servant our father is getting along well. He is still alive.” Then they bowed down and prostrated themselves.

     29 When he raised his eyes and saw Benjamin his brother, the son of his mother, he went on to say: “Is this YOUR brother, the youngest one of whom YOU have spoken to me?” And he added: “May God show you his favor, my son.” 30 Joseph was now in a hurry, because his inward emotions were excited toward his brother, so that he looked for a place to weep and he went into an interior room and gave way to tears there. 31 After that he washed his face and went out and kept control of himself and said: “SET on the meal.” 32 And they proceeded to set it on for him by himself and for them by themselves and for the Egyptians who were eating with him by themselves; for the Egyptians were not able to eat a meal with the Hebrews, because that is a detestable thing to the Egyptians.

     33 And they were seated before him, the firstborn according to his right as firstborn and the youngest according to his youngness; and the men kept looking at one another in amazement. 34 And he kept having portions carried from before him to them, but he would increase Benjamin’s portion five times the size of the portions of all the others. So they continued banqueting and drinking with him to the full.

44  Later on he commanded the man who was over his house, saying: “Fill the bags of the men with food to the extent they are able to carry it and place the money of each one in the mouth of his bag. 2 But you must place my cup, the silver cup, in the mouth of the bag of the youngest and the money for his cereals.” So he did according to the word of Joseph which he had spoken.

     3 The morning had become light when the men were sent away, both they and their asses. 4 They went out of the city. They had not gone far when Joseph said to the man who was over his house: “Get up! Chase after the men and be certain to overtake them and to say to them, ‘Why have YOU repaid bad for good? 5 Is not this the thing that my master drinks from and by means of which he expertly reads omens? It is a bad deed YOU have committed.’”

     6 Eventually he overtook them and spoke these words to them. 7 But they said to him: “Why does my lord speak with such words as these? It is unthinkable that your servants should do anything like this. 8 Why, the money that we found in the mouth of our bags we brought back to you from the land of Canaan. How, then, could we steal silver or gold from the house of your master? 9 Let the one of your slaves with whom it may be found die and let us ourselves also become slaves to my master.” 10 So he said: “Let it be now exactly according to YOUR words. Thus the one with whom it may be found will become a slave to me, but YOU yourselves will be proved innocent.” 11 With that they quickly let down each one his bag to the earth and they opened each one his own bag. 12 And he went searching carefully. He started with the oldest and finished with the youngest. At last the cup was found in Benjamin’s bag.

     13 Then they ripped their mantles apart and lifted each one his load back onto his ass and returned to the city. 14 And Judah and his brothers went on into Joseph’s house, and he was still there; and they proceeded to fall before him to the earth. 15 Joseph now said to them: “What sort of deed is this that YOU have done? Did YOU not know that such a man as I am can expertly read omens?” 16 At this Judah exclaimed: “What can we say to my master? What can we speak? And how can we prove ourselves righteous? The [true] God has found out the error of your slaves. Here we are slaves to my master, both we and the one in whose hand the cup was found!” 17 However, he said: “It is unthinkable for me to do this! The man in whose hand the cup was found is the one who will become a slave to me. As for the rest of YOU, go up in peace to YOUR father.”

     18 Judah now came near to him and said: “I pray you, my master, please let your slave speak a word in the hearing of my master, and do not let your anger grow hot against your slave, because it is the same with you as with Pharaoh. 19 My master asked his slaves, saying, ‘Do YOU have a father or a brother?’ 20 So we said to my master, ‘We do have an aged father and a child of his old age, the youngest. But his brother is dead so that he alone is left of his mother, and his father does love him.’ 21 After that you said to your slaves, ‘Bring him down to me that I may set my eye upon him.’ 22 But we said to my master, ‘The boy is not able to leave his father. If he did leave his father, he would certainly die.’ 23 Then you said to your slaves, ‘Unless YOUR youngest brother comes down with YOU, YOU may not see my face anymore.’

     24 “And it came about that we went up to your slave my father and then told him the words of my master. 25 Later our father said, ‘Return, buy a little food for us.’ 26 But we said, ‘We are not able to go down. If our youngest brother is with us we will go down, because we are not able to see the man’s face in case our youngest brother is not with us.’ 27 Then your slave my father said to us, ‘YOU yourselves well know that my wife bore but two sons to me. 28 Later the one went out from my company and I exclaimed: “Ah, he must surely be torn to pieces!” and I have not seen him till now. 29 If YOU were to take this one also out of my sight and a fatal accident were to befall him, YOU would certainly bring down my gray hairs with calamity to Sheol.’

     30 “And now, as soon as I should come to your slave my father without the boy along with us, when that one’s soul is bound up with this one’s soul, 31 then it is certain to occur that as soon as he sees that the boy is not there he will simply die, and your slaves will indeed bring down the gray hairs of your slave our father with grief to Sheol. 32 For your slave became surety for the boy when away from his father, saying, ‘If I fail to bring him back to you, then I shall have sinned against my father forever.’ 33 So now, please, let your slave stay instead of the boy as a slave to my master, that the boy may go up with his brothers. 34 For how can I go up to my father without the boy along with me, for fear that then I may look upon the calamity that will find out my father?”

45  At this Joseph was no longer able to control himself before all those who were stationed by him. So he cried out: “HAVE everybody go out from me!” And no one else stood with him while Joseph made himself known to his brothers.

     2 And he began to raise his voice in weeping, so that the Egyptians got to hear it and Pharaoh’s house got to hear it. 3 Finally Joseph said to his brothers: “I am Joseph. Is my father still alive?” But his brothers were unable to answer him at all, because they were disturbed by reason of him. 4 So Joseph said to his brothers: “Come close to me, please.” With that they came close to him.

     Then he said: “I am Joseph YOUR brother, whom YOU sold into Egypt. 5 But now do not feel hurt and do not be angry with yourselves because YOU sold me here; because for the preservation of life God has sent me ahead of YOU. 6 For this is the second year of the famine in the midst of the earth, and there are yet five years in which there will be no plowing time or harvest. 7 Consequently God sent me ahead of YOU in order to place a remnant for YOU men in the earth and to keep YOU alive by a great escape. 8 So now it was not YOU who sent me here, but it was the [true] God, that he might appoint me a father to Pharaoh and a lord for all his house and as one dominating over all the land of Egypt.

     9 “Go up quickly to my father, and YOU must say to him, ‘This is what your son Joseph has said: “God has appointed me lord for all Egypt. Come down to me. Do not delay. 10 And you must dwell in the land of Goshen, and you must continue near me, you and your sons and the sons of your sons and your flocks and your herds and everything you have. 11 And I will supply you with food there, for there are yet five years of famine; for fear you and your house and everything you have may come to poverty.”’ 12 And here YOUR eyes and the eyes of my brother Benjamin are seeing that it is my mouth that is speaking to YOU. 13 So YOU must tell my father about all my glory in Egypt and everything YOU have seen; and YOU must hurry and bring my father down here.”

     14 Then he fell upon the neck of Benjamin his brother and gave way to weeping, and Benjamin wept upon his neck. 15 And he proceeded to kiss all his brothers and to weep over them, and after that his brothers spoke with him.

     16 And the news was heard at the house of Pharaoh, saying: “Joseph’s brothers have come!” And it proved to be good in the eyes of Pharaoh and of his servants. 17 Accordingly Pharaoh said to Joseph: “Say to your brothers, ‘Do this: Load YOUR beasts of burden and go enter the land of Canaan, 18 and take YOUR father and YOUR households and come here to me, that I may give YOU the good of the land of Egypt; and eat the fat part of the land. 19 And you yourself are commanded: “Do this: TAKE for yourselves wagons from the land of Egypt for YOUR little ones and YOUR wives, and YOU must lift YOUR father on one and come here. 20 And do not let YOUR eye feel sorry over YOUR equipment, because the good of all the land of Egypt is YOURS.”’”

     21 Following that the sons of Israel did so, and Joseph gave them wagons according to Pharaoh’s orders and gave them provisions for the way. 22 To each of them he gave individual changes of mantles, but to Benjamin he gave three hundred silver pieces and five changes of mantles. 23 And to his father he sent as follows: ten asses carrying good things of Egypt and ten she-asses carrying grain and bread and sustenance for his father for the way. 24 Thus he sent his brothers off, and they proceeded to go. However, he said to them: “Do not get exasperated at one another on the way.”

     25 And they began going up out of Egypt and at length came into the land of Canaan to Jacob their father. 26 Then they reported to him, saying: “Joseph is still alive, and he is the one dominating over all the land of Egypt!” But his heart grew numb, because he did not believe them. 27 When they went on speaking to him all of Joseph’s words that he had spoken to them and he got to see the wagons that Joseph had sent to carry him, the spirit of Jacob their father began to revive. 28 Then Israel exclaimed: “It is enough! Joseph my son is still alive! Ah, let me go and see him before I die!”